Activists of Ducsu and Muktijuddho Moncho clash on the campus
Around 15 people were injured in clashes between activists of Muktijuddho Mancha and the quota reforms movement platform, Bangladesh General Students' Rights Protection Council (BGSRPC), on the Dhaka University (DU) campus on Tuesday.
Dhaka University Central Students' Union (Ducsu) Vice President (VP) Nurul Haque Nur was seen beating and being beaten by the Mancha activists, according to photos taken by journalists.
The clashes started when several activists of Muktijuddho Mancha — a platform of descendants of freedom fighters — attacked Nur and his followers while they were preparing to gather at the Raju Memorial to protest the Indian Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).
According to witnesses, around 20 activists of Muktijuddho Moncho, led by its President Aminul Islam Bulbul and General Secretary Al Mamun, took position earlier at the same venue where BGSRPC's protest was scheduled for 4pm.
The Muktijuddho Moncho activists asked Nur and his followers not to hold the rally as it was an internal issue of the Indian government.
As Nur and his group refused to oblige them, activists of both the organizations engaged in an altercation over the issue and at one stage Bulbul started beating Nur and his followers.
Later, the quota reformists chased the Mancha activists away in a counter-attack.
All the injured took primary treatment at Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH).
BNP leaders, including Joint Secretary General Habib-un-Nabi Khan Sohel, came to the hospital to visit the injured activists in the evening.
Al Mamun, General Secretary of Muktijuddho Mancha, said: "We only resisted the group led by Nur when they came to attack us."
"The CAA is an internal issue of India and the Ducsu VP has no right to protest against it. Moreover, he could not clarify his stance on his illegal monetary transactions, which is why we opposed him," he added.
VP Nurul Haque Nur said that a finger of his left hand was broken when the Muktijuddho Mancha activists attacked him and his followers for raising their voice against the Indian government’s citizenship policy.
Nur made it known that a rally would be held at 12 noon on Wednesday to protest the attack as well as express solidarity with Indians demonstrating against the CAA.
Ducsu Social Service Secretary Akhter Hossain was also injured during the fracas.
Two more quota reform activists were injured in another attack in front of the DU vice chancellor’s residence at around 8pm, allegedly carried out by Muktijuddho Mancha activists.
Saleh Uddin Sifat, a quota reform activist, alleged that Akram Hossain and Nahid Islam, two third year students of the Sociology department, came under attack by Mancha activists while they were on their way to meet the VC to demand punishment for the instigators of the previous clashes.
Both were treated at DMCH later.
It may be recalled that the upper house of the Indian parliament, Rajya Sabha, approved the Citizenship Amendment Bill on December 11, making it easier for non-Muslim immigrants from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan to become citizens of India to the exclusion of Muslims.
Thousands of Indians, including students, have been agitating against the CAA since Monday with demonstrations on the campuses of Jamia Millia Islamia, Aligarh Muslim University, Delhi University, and other academic institutions and places amidst heavy police deployment.